By the time Mike died, I was flatlined—emotionally, physically, and financially. His medical retirement benefits and SSI income not only stopped, but were reclaimed for December because he didn’t live that entire month.
My priorities now were to find a job and continue to manage my mother’s care. What followed is another story—repairing Mom’s home for rent or sale (depending on her survival), dividing and distributing her belongings, and dealing with family dramas and jealousies.
Looking back over my almost thirty years with Mike—the constant worry about his insulin reactions, the 1966 accident and ever-present risk of more, the trips to emergency rooms, my pleadings with God to protect him and us, the decrepit house, the amputations, the devious spending and the fading cognitive ability—I can still say that the last four were some of the sweetest I remember, because he no longer got drunk.